Obamacare

Mandate Madness: ObamaCare Appeal Begins Today

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None of these people will be ruling on ObamaCare's mandate.

The constitutional challenge against ObamaCare's individual mandate to purchase health insurance heads to a federal appeals court today, with arguments beginning this morning in Richmond, VA. The hearings are closed to electronic devices, so we'll have to wait until reports trickle out to find out exactly how the arguments went. We did, however, finally find out the names of three judges assigned to hear the case. All three were appointed by Democratic presidents; if previous challenges to ObamaCare's mandate are any indication, that means the challengers hoping to take down the mandate will face long odds. The Examiner's Philip Klein is on the scene:

A three-judge federal appeals panel comprised of two Obama nominees and a Clinton nominee will hear arguments later this morning in two lawsuits challenging the constitutionality of the national health care law.

The makeup of the U.S. Fourth Circuit of Appeals panel is crucial, because in lower court rulings so far, Democratic judges have upheld the law while Republican judges have declared it unconstitutional.

The judges on the panel will be Obama nominees James A. Wynn, Jr and Andre M. Davis, who will sit on the panel along with Clinton nominee Diana Gribbon Motz. According to the Fourth Circuit, the panel is chosen by "a computer program designed to achieve total random selection."

In previous cases, judges appointed by Democrats have ruled that ObamaCare's insurance mandate passes legal muster because Congress is constitutionally allowed to regulate economic activity and mental activity.

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  1. Constitution, schmonstitution; we think it’s a good idea!

    1. Show me exactly where it says Congress can’t do anything it wants!

      Well I don’t care! We’re allowing it anyway!

      1. Congress can pass any law that is necessary and proper to regulate commerce and promote the general welfare.

        IOW Congress can do anything it wants, and the role of judges is not to judge the law but to defend it against those rubes who don’t believe the federal government has unlimited power.

      2. better – show me where it (the constitution) says congress cant do health insurance regulation

        1. im a retard

          1. then old mex stalks a retard eh?

        2. OO, your blatant fucking ignorance is showing.

          Congress derives its powers from the Constitution. It’s not the case that Congress can do anything it wants unless the Constitution says it can’t; it is the case that Congress has only those limited powers expressly granted to it by the Constitution.

          Show me in the Constitution where it says Congress can force me to buy something I don’t want.

          1. and that’s the contention before the courts which remains undecided. who’s ignorant now?

            1. that’s the contention before the courts

              Actually, not quite. Evidently you’re only marginally literate.

              The question is not “where does it say Congress can’t do this”, which is what you posited. The question is whether it falls within the express grant of power to regulate commerce among the several states.

              To which I will repeat my question: as someone who evidently is a proponent of the individual mandate, you bear the burden of demonstrating that this is a legitimate exercise of Congressional power. So where in the Constitution is Congress given the power to require individuals to purchase a product?

          2. Congress can do whatever the fuck it wants as long as the executive sees its role as approving legislation and the judiciary sees its role as defending legislation.
            Checks and balances do not work when the different branches of government see their role as defending and helping the others.
            Congress can force you to buy something you don’t want because the neither the executive nor the judiciary provide any check against legislative power.

            1. It’s funny to me that this nation’s government is referred to as a “democracy”. Ha.

              1. But my public school teacher said it is a democracy so it must be so.

                1. It’s a democratic republic, not a democracy.

                  1. A constitutional democratic republic.

                  2. It’s a democratic republic, not a democracy.

                    That’s theoretically true, which makes it even funnier that many people call it a democracy.

                    A nation where the congress can force me to buy stuff I don’t want; where the president can send hit squads out to whack anybody who displeases him without answering for it. Whether you call it a democracy or a democratic republic doesn’t mean shit.

                    I know where some of you will go next: but we have Teh Elections! For a government of unlimited power, does that matter very much?

              2. It’s a republic, if you can keep it.

                1. Sorry, Ben, but evidently we can’t. You also were right about people who give up essential liberties for a small measure of perceived safety.

  2. Totally random selection results in two Obama appointees? I’m convinced.

    1. Randomized for great social justice!

    2. You just run random selections until you get a good one.

      Oh, and here’s another example why Republican presidents are often better for libertarianism than Democrats. Wouldn’t we prefer McCain appointees right now?

      1. “All three were appointed by Democratic presidents; if previous challenges to ObamaCare’s mandate are any indication, that means the challengers hoping to take down the mandate will face long odds.”

        But…But….we’re a nation of laws, not men!
        Ow, I hurt myself laughing…

  3. we’ll have to wait until reports trickle out

    What?!

  4. Will the ruling have anything to do with Venezuela?

  5. “two Obama nominees and a Clinton nominee”

    Talk about a forgone conclusion.

    1. I’d like to have a word with their random number generator.

      1. Can it do PowerBall numbers?

  6. Welcome to the House of Fun!

    (look, if you’re going to make a Madness reference…I had to get The Young Ones in there too.)

    1. This is as good reason as any to mention that the last Madness album, The Liberty of Norton Folgate, is one of the best albums of the last decade. Easily their best work. Stands with the Kinks’ best albums.

      And the Young Ones quote of the day is “What are you going to do Rick, burn your bra?”

      1. “Can you kill yourself with laxatives?”

        “I don’t know, but I’m going to stay and find out!”

        1. Mike The Cool Person checks his reflection. It looks good.

          1. Vegetable rights and peace!

            1. I can’t go to pwison. I’m too pwetty! I’ll get waped!

  7. Talk about a stacked deck. I suggest they save taxpayers money and give a ruling in favor of the government now. No need for weeks of arguments that won’t persuade judges who have already made up their minds.

  8. They should go into chambers and let the lead attorney for each side play “Rock, Paper, Scissors”.

    That way, the appeal might have a chance.

  9. The panel is chosen by “a computer program designed to achieve total random selection.”

    My gosh, the Administration must be very happy for such a lucky draw.

    1. The software was also appointed by Obama.

      1. It’s the Chicago way.

  10. Why are we spending millions of dollars to encase and protect the constitution. It’s doubtful we will ever use it again.

    1. Oh, they’re using it. They alternate between using it as a doormat or T.P.

      1. parts of it were only good for that. 3/5ths of a person indeed

        1. becuz i don’t understand history

        2. Your blatant fucking ignorance continues to impress.

          The alternative was to count slaves as a full person, which would have given the southern slave-holding states greater representation in Congress, you dumb fuck.

          It’s not the case that those racist, rich white guys felt that slaves were only “3/5 of a person” – it was the case that they did not want the states whose economy was based nearly entirely on slavery to have disproportionate influence in Congress based on the number of slaves they owned. It actually would have been even better if they had managed to get slaves to not count at all – i.e., “0% of a person.”

          You are so fucking ignorant, and you seem to revel in your ignorance.

          1. Either that or you’re getting trolled. But it doesn’t hurt to set the record straight. The 3/5ths compromise irks me too. Willfull ignorance or mendacious prick? Doesn’t matter.

            1. We need better trolls.

              1. ^^THIS^^

          2. one alternative was to count slaves as a full person. other alternatives were to abolish slavery outright & force the issue.

            1. ^^NOT THIS^^

              1. ^^NOR THIS^^

                1. Right. Because I’m a god damned troll.

                  Fucking asscunt.

            2. So the alternative was to fight the Civil War right away or never have a United States in the first place. But that’s not what happened and the 3/5ths compromise was still better in every way than counting slaves as 1 person for the purposes of representation.

              1. how do you know that the anti-slave states couldnt win the war rather than compromise? how do you know the war for independence couldnt have been fought after the slave war?

                1. Oh, I get it! OO is smarter and better educated on the philosophy of government than James Madison, James Monroe, George Washington, Benjamin Franklin, John Jay, John Adams, et al., combined! He alone can explain why their silly “3/5 compromise” was so stupid and the wrong thing to do!

                  If only he had been there to save them from their folly and explain to them the correct approach in forming a new union of sovereign states.

              2. You can bet your ass if we fought the Civil War right away, the British would take full advantage of it. So there wouldn’t be a United States either way.

            3. You do realize that those slaves were not voting, right? If a white guy owned twenty slaves, full counting of slaves would have meant 21 votes worth of representation in Congress, but only one of those 21 casting votes.

  11. Heck, even if the judges had been Republican appointees I would have little hope for an honest outcome. Few judges ever seem willing to limit the power of the government of which they’re a part.

  12. Actually, the pro-OCare courts ruled that Congress can regulate economic inactivity.

    I’m working up my presentation now on why OCare is Constitutional (its a panel, the other lawyer is from the Texas AG’s office, so he will take the correct side, and I will present the incorrect side).

    Its actually kind of fun, in a mental experiment way. The pro-OCare side can rely on a pretty straight reading of existing cases (as opposed to the actual Constitution). Even the mental gymnastics to get authority over economic inactivity instead of just economic activity aren’t too tough. Any sophomore Philosophy major could do a passable job.

    My goal is to leave the audience convinced, until the very end, that I think OCare is totally Constitutional.

    1. Then at the end say, “I ain’t fer it, I’m agin it!”

    2. I’m still thinking about how to break the news. I need to be totally convincing in my role as an OCare defender to pull it off, though.

      1. You need to find someone who is a true defender, then at the end, turn to him and clock him with a folding chair.

        Duh.

      2. I don’t know what they have to say,
        It makes no difference anyway,
        Whatever it is, I’m against it.

        No matter what it is or who commenced it, I’m against it.

        Your proposition may be good,
        But let’s have one thing understood,
        Whatever it is, I’m against it.
        And even when you’ve changed it or condensed it, I’m against it.

        I’m opposed to it,
        On general principle, I’m opposed to it.

        (He’s opposed to it.)
        (In fact, he says he’s opposed to it!)

        For months before my son was born,
        I used to yell from night to morn,
        Whatever it is, I’m against it.
        And I’ve kept yelling since I first commenced it, I’m against it!

    3. I’m informed that a law mandating you eat broccoli is akin to a “tax”.

      1. i would say its a health and safety thing, like wearing a motorcycle helmut or shutting down gay bathhouses (hmmm – did they leave the heterosexual bathhouses open? and where were they?)

  13. Maybe I shouldn’t, but I still have a little hope. The 4th Circuit tends to be pretty conservative in comparison to most others.

    But yeah, 2 Obama appointees does not make me overly optimistic.

    1. It doesn’t matter how the 4th Circuit “tends” for this hearing, because the actual judges have all made up their minds already.

      The big question is whether the results will be thrown out and a much larger panel from the 4th Circuit empaneled to review these 3 judges.

      It’s entirely political.

  14. Even if the appellate court ruled against O-care, an issue like this would always be headed to the Supreme Court no matter who was assigned to it.

    In an issue like this, the appellate court can help to frame the arguments, but that’s about it. The trial court developed the record which usually has more influence (although, in a legal theory-heavy case like this, the trial court record is less important).

    1. It seems to me that it’s purely a question of law, not of fact, which would mean the appellate court reviews de novo and decides for itself the legal question. It will defer to the trial court only with respect to the taking of evidence and inferences and conclusions made therefrom. And I don’t know if there were any, since this really is a question of law.

  15. What the Founders really meant, when they wrote the Constitution, was, “The government should take care of everybody, and make sure all outcomes are equal and FAIR.”

    They just used a bunch of old words, and stuff. Read between the lines, people!

    1. The word “constitution” means “the physical character of the body as to strength, health, etc.” Therefore, for the body politic, what’s constitutional is what is healthy for the physical character of the country.

  16. An individual panelist’s ruling in this case might as well be a job application for a SCOTUS appointment during Obama’s second term, if he gets reelected.

  17. People say that electing judges politicizes the law but clearly it is irrelevant how the judges are appointed.

    1. The problem with elected judges is more the re-election than the election. Appointing judges has its own problems, of course, but at least they don’t need to campaign from the bench. Most judges don’t decide many big politically charged things like this and for most day to day criminal and civil stuff, I think it is much better to have judges that do not need to please any constituency.

  18. Q: What’s long and white?
    A: Nuthin!

    1. I disagree, sir.

  19. Hey, remember when the Republican majorities created courts that completely banned abortions and made everyone pray to God 5 times a day?

    No, me either,

    The left keeps these boogeymen alive long enough to keep them in power (thanks libertarian Obama voters!) to do the real damage, and to those who like to play along with the hollow fearmongering I say suck it up and reap what you sow.

    1. lub-rahls didnt make-up FEMA camps, gun confiscation, or death panels

      1. I don’t know about the FEMA camp bullshit, but liberals sure as shit have been proponents of gun confiscation.

        Or are you so full of shit you would deny that Dianne Feinstein expressly stated on national TV that “if I could have gotten the votes to say ‘Mr. and Mrs. America, turn them all in,’ I would have done it”?

        Not to mention the efforts of Carolyn McCarthy, Chuck (spit) Schumer and other Democraps at restricting, banning and yes, confiscating privately owned firearms.

  20. I’m sure Ron Paul and Gary Johnson are gonna go into full Libertarian mode any day now just like they did during the Obamacare debates.

    Talk about leading the libertarian charge…..

    Oh, screw it. I can’t even keep up the sarcasm here.

    Why the eff don’t Paul/Johnson actually start doing something really Libertarian, you know, by holding daily press conferences re: the evils of govt.-run health care?
    Well? Well? Well?

    Maybe instead of bemoaning the existence of the US military, maybe Paul/Johnson can actually discuss (frequently in front of cameras) how Libertarianism is a boon to every day life; and how big gummint Liberalism is a daily disaster.

    ‘Cause that’s what an outsider who really wants to be president would do. Or maybe tweet about it, right, Sarah?

    1. Sure, daily press conferences will do the trick. Plenty of newspapers will put those on the front page every day.

      Seriously? That’s what you think libertarians need to do, hold press conferences?

  21. Original, documented investigation on Kaiser Permanente’s rigged end of life counseling, “Birth of a Real Life Death Panel,” is posted on http://www.hmohardball.com at http://www.hmohardball.com/Death Panel Birth & Attachments 1st in Series 2-14-2011.pdf
    Twenty years ago, Dr. Ezekiel Emanuel, ObamaCare’s ethics engineer, published that he had invented a scheme that induced 70% of patients to reject treatment and life support in a 15 minute end of life counseling session. He would deny Rep. Giffords’ care, because she may not be able to “meaningfully participate” in the American “polity.”
    POLITICIANS, BUREAUCRATS, AND DR. STRANGELOVE PHYSICIANS ARE “BENDING THE COST CURVE,” BUT BREAKING THE PATIENTS AND DESTROYING THE DOCTOR- PATIENT RELATIONSHIP.
    Robert Finney, Ph.D.

    1. death w dignity is meaningful.

      1. Show us.

        1. The clown show that would result from this could hardly be termed ‘dignified.’ What I’m looking for here is a description of the least dignified death possible.

      2. There is no such thing. If you’ve ever watched someone die, especially from a terminal disease, you’d know there is no dignified way to go. You cough your last, shit yourself, and become the ultimate burden on your loved ones–a sack of putrefying flesh that has to be disposed of, because no one wants you around anymore. Because you stink, and it’s only getting worse from there.

        There is nothing good about death, and no dignified way to die.

  22. Huh… Judge Davis. I used to work at the Federal Court in Baltimore and Judge Davis was a cool dude who I had some really engaging conversations with in passing. I am genuinely interested in how he will decide to vote.

  23. They used the Texas Instruments Probability Simulation .

  24. @DigitalRuse – yes, Judge Davis is a genuinely nice person and a pretty good judge in any run of the mill case (I was before him several times in district court matters). I don’t trust him not to be a “good” liberal on something like this though.

    1. No, I hear ya.

      I was an IT guy there, and he put me on the record (on the fly) during discussions of the attorney’s wanting to provide digital evidence to the Juror’s (It hadn’t really been done before). I had to provide a laptop that I would certify as having no existing documents or other photographs.

      Probably one of the most nerve wracking things I have even been through.

  25. ALl I know is that health care is still unaffordable and everything jsut keeps going UP and UP.

    http://www.anon-web.es.tc

  26. This just seems like more partisan politics. Who’s representing individuals and the principles we were founded on?

    http://www.intellectualtakeout…..e-care-act

  27. Original, documented investigation on Kaiser Permanente’s rigged end of life counseling, “Birth of a Real Life Death Panel,” is posted on http://www.hmohardball.com at http://www.hmohardball.com/Death Panel Birth & Attachments 1st in Series 2-14-2011.pdf
    Twenty years ago, Dr. Ezekiel Emanuel, ObamaCare’s ethics engineer, published that he had invented a scheme that induced 70% of patients to reject treatment and life support in a 15 minute end of life counseling session. He would deny Rep. Giffords’ care, because she may not be able to “meaningfully participate” in the American “polity.”
    POLITICIANS, BUREAUCRATS, AND DR. STRANGELOVE PHYSICIANS ARE “BENDING THE COST CURVE,” BUT BREAKING THE PATIENTS AND DESTROYING THE DOCTOR- PATIENT RELATIONSHIP.
    Robert Finney, Ph.D.

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